The 45th Parliament of Australia sits for the first time next week. A new Cabinet is in place and federal departments are focusing on new priorities.
Now is the perfect time to refresh your government relations strategy and start working on those important new relationships.
Here are some simple ideas to start:
1. Use the goals in your business plan to identify the relationships you’ll need with government to support and achieve them – these form the basis of your government and stakeholder relationship strategy.
2. Do some research to find the right people – those elected officials and public servants that have responsibility for your industry or sector and those that might just have an interest in it (if they share your passion, they are likely to be strong advocates!).
3. Update your contacts database – an annual (at least) spring clean of your mailing lists is important, especially after each election.
4. Send newly-elected Ministers, MPs and Senators a congratulations letter welcoming them to their role, introducing your organisation and letting them know you look forward to meeting them at some stage.
5. Offer something with no expectation of a returned favour. You may have information or services that your MP can access to help their constituents, or you might express willingness to collaborate on future policy formulation.
From here, you are well on your way to establishing a solid relationship with people whose decisions may impact on your work or business and, importantly, whose decisions you may need to inform and influence in the future.